Cambridge professor: "Eskom should be cash cow, not hungry dog"

Cambridge professor: "Eskom should be cash cow, not hungry dog"

- Several energy experts have slammed Tito Mboweni's announcement of a R59 billion Eskom bailout

- They say that will this place extreme financial strain on taxpayers

- Additionally, they argue that it will not address Eskom's underlying issues

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Finance Minister Tito Mboweni announced a R59 billion bailout for Eskom on Tuesday, but warned that it would place significant strain on taxpayers.

While Mboweni said that this bailout would bolster Eskom's stability, one energy expert has reacted negatively to the plan.

Professor Anton Eberhard says that Eskom doesn't need a bailout. Rather, he says it requires "restructuring and a new business model".

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Eberhard, who is part of an Eskom restructuring task team, says that raising the funds for Eskom would require tax increases for citizens which they cannot afford, has gathered. 

"It makes me sick to my stomach," he said, according to The Citizen. "Eskom should be a cash cow, not a hungry dog."

Eberhard is not alone in slamming the Eskom plan. DA MP Geordin Hill-Lewis has also criticised the Bill. 

"It is a bailout budget and the poor are doing all of the bailing out," Hill-Lewis said.

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Another expert, Chris Yelland, has said that the Eskom bailout is will temporarily ease the SOE's problems, but does not address its underlying issues. Yelland says that the energy provider will continue "burning cash" until it substantially reduces its operating costs and eliminates "structural inefficiencies". 

He added that for the 2018/19 financial year, Eskom will have a nett loss of a whopping R20 billion. In other words, Eskom's challenges are here to stay for the foreseeable future.

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